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How to be a Domestic Slut

Three cheers to the BBC for resurrecting Butterflies for a Christmas special. Those of us who wouldn’t recognise hollandaise if it came ready-made need the hapless Ria (played by Wendy Craig) as an icon to reassure ourselves that we don’t all have to be a Domestic Goddess, à la Nigella Lawson.

If it’s not bad enough that those of us who flunked out of Home Economics at the age of 13 with Grade E and a half burnt school kitchen have had to suffer male chefs (Ainsley, Jamie, Anthony et al) wittering on at us for the past few years, along comes the divine Nigella to make us all feel completely inadequate.
Ria, our star slut, on the other hand is a woman who not only can’t cook but couldn’t care less that she can’t cook and that the family are (or were when last seen on TV) all as thin as rakes due to the scarcity of non-burnt offerings.

Ria’s sluttishness doesn’t merely contain itself to gastronomic disasters. Oh no! True domestic devil-may-care that she is – she doesn’t give two hoots about hoovering, ironing or dusting either. In fact, despite being a housewife without a (noticeable) vocation, she manages to convince her long-suffering husband Ben of the necessity of employing a domestic helper, a “lady who does”! Way to go sister!

For those of you who aren’t convinced (and, deary me, where have you been for the past few years if you haven’t noticed the advantages of this lifestyle choice yet? – slaving away in the kitchen or something?) here are a few handy pointers on how to perfect your domestic slut skills and get away with it.

Cooking
Completely unnecessary. A microwave and a stash of pot noodles will be all you will ever need. If you want to pretend you’re not a slut, boil several pots and serve on plates and say you made the noodle supreme yourself.

Entertaining
Two choices: (1) expensive caterers; (2) the patron saint of all sluts, St Michael (aka Marks & Spencer ready meals).

Washing up
Dishwasher. Enough said. Teach the family how to load it themselves.

Washing (clothes)
Your launderette’s service wash prices will seem very reasonable when you no longer have to touch washing powder and you notice the benefit in your beautiful hands. Inform your family that laundry will be a weekly event in future and that it may be wise to buy extra pairs of socks, pants, ties, etc.

Ironing
At only 50p a shirt (or thereabouts) you may want to use your launderette’s services again for smaller items. Larger items: tumble dry slowly until creaseless or get your husband/boyfriend to put them in his trouser press (this is called equal division of chores).

Dusting & Hoovering
Out of bounds, unless you employ a “domestic”. Other tricks: use lots of table cloths and covers – send to the laundry when dusty. Have wooden floors with a selection of rugs – to be sent for professional cleaning when dirty. Never demean yourself by picking up a vacuum cleaner: you know your bad back won’t forgive you.

It’s time to end the body fascism

You might be thinking that you can’t get away from fat people on TV at the moment after a glut of programmes featuring life’s larger people (the amusing drama “Fat Friends” and the rather more poignant documentary “Christie’s Story”) but the reality is that the media does its best to exclude images of anyone who can’t fit into a Gap size 10.

As an Evans gold card account holder myself, I am often hesitant to put my head above the parapet to stand up and defend the rights of plump people like myself to be as plump, chubby, stout, corpulent, fat, big or large (whatever you call it) as our bodies make us. For there is, without a doubt, a small voice within me that does whisper to me sometimes that it might be pretty nice if I could also fit into those impossible size 10 jeans myself.

However, common sense and 30 years’ experience within this body tell me that it won’t ever happen and, even if I did spend the rest of my life on the non-stop diet and exercise treadmill that it would take me to reach even a modest size 14, I still wouldn’t look like the girl on a magazine.

And it is magazines and the printed mass media who are the biggest body fascists and purveyors of stick insect beauty that exerts colossal pressure on people to conform to an unnatural, often unobtainable washboard stomach slimness.

When I noticed recently a national newspaper using male models with sunken cheeks, pipe cleaner legs and lifeless eyes, I dared to complain that the images were not attractive (to me as a woman) and that I thought one particular model was obscenely, skeletally thin. I was offended that the ‘heroin chic’ wafer-thin fashion creed was now being applied to male as well as female models. Of course my letter did not get published.

Whether this was just because of lack of space, or because I had dared to question the style elite’s right to decide exactly what level of emaciation would be chic in December, or because I had affronted the fashion editor by imprudently noticing (from his jowly byline photo) that he was not as drainpipe thin as the images he was promoting, I will leave for you to decide.

The notion that clothes look good on a skinny, walking clotheshorse is a nonsense, as can be evidenced by countless beanpole, flat chested women on the catwalk: clothes don’t “hang well” on malnourished people – they hang loose, shapelessly and baggy.

If more people were as shocked by pictures of seriously underweight women in the media as I was shocked by the pictures of that male model, the fashion lie that “we’re giving people what they want” would crumble in no time.

I’m a leo lover

Something is wrong, very wrong. I have developed a crush on Leonardo DiCaprio. Oh that’s nothing, I hear you all say. Well, the problem is that I am 24. Twenty-four years old! Never a Brosette or a Jason Donovan fan, my teenage fantasies tended to centre around New Kids On The Block and Corey Haim, but I was 15. At 15 it is normal to have a relationship with a poster and to believe that there is some depth to your liaison. I remember going to a New Kids concert, convinced that I even though I was in the 4th row, Joey McIntyre was telling ME that I had the Right Stuff and was his Cover Girl, and not any of the other thousand Blockettes. I remember looking at my posters and eerily believing that Corey Haim was actually looking at me. But at 24?!

I have had two serious boyfriends (unless you count my poster men), spent 4 years at University, lived abroad and have a interesting job but I am seriously infatuated with an American heartthrob. When Leo recently came to London for the premiere of the Beach, I contemplated leaving work early so I could slink past the Odeon Leicester Square. I imagined standing out amidst the sea of screaming fans. I wouldn’t be like that; I would be cooler, older, more sophisticated and sure he would be able to spot me through the heaving pubescent hormones surrounding me.

The fact that I actually work in the world of film PR does not really help my crush because instead of reminding myself that I live in the real world, I believe that one day I might very well have to work on a Leo film, even if it is in ten years. Then you see I would wrangle my way into the premiere and this time I would not have to remain invisible. He would notice me and no, it would not just be a physical thing – no siree – he would want me, need me, recognise that a girl-next-door like myself would be the answer to all his woes.

My fantasy went to a higher plane when I began to recreate that scene from Romeo and Juliet. I would be dancing at the after-party; Leo would spot me once again. Unable to control himself and shaking with lust, he would saunter over, oblivious to the charms of the Nicole Appletons and Melanie Sykes, and place his hand over the necessary fish tank. I would lift my head, briefly interrupted from my impossibly sexy dancing and smile coyly. I would say something dazzling and witty, probably topped up with a memorable comment about the fish. The next day our love would be splashed across the papers. Forget being locked in a bathroom with Nicole Appleton, this guy would be ready to marry me in a bathroom, let alone anything else. Ahem, you see, this is serious.

I recently had dinner with a friend and after a few bottles of wine I made my confession. We indulged in true girlie analysis and instead of having her tell me to sort it out and grow up, we indulged in my fantasies, concluding that yes, it could happen. I worked in the right industry and one day, one day, I might just meet him and there was no reason for the attraction not to be mutual. This was not what I needed. The other point of debate was what leads us to have these obsessions? Was my relationship lacking excitement? Was my life missing something?

When you are younger, I guess you don’t need to question it because it is normal. You have probably not experienced love or any of the other great things soon to come your way and so to a fantasy is healthy. But at my age? Luckily with the furore of The Beach somewhat abating, I have managed to calm myself down. Until the next time maybe. Let’s hope not.

A life less ordinary

One of my New Year resolutions, or should I say Millennium resolutions, (to stiffen my determination not to break it!) was to manage my money better. I made lists galore of everything it seemed to disappear on and I promised my ever-suffering bank manager that the year 2000 would welcome the arrival of a financially revolutionised Christelle Randall. The problem is, Millennium resolution or not, it cannot be done. I am suffering from a deadly combination of “living and working in London”.

When I left my cushy existence as a student, I thought my years of living in debt would be well and truly over. I entertained high hopes that my student loan debts would be obliterated with the Millennium Bug Crisis and that after graduating I would land a job in PR, and a well paid one at that. Things have not gone quite according to plan…

Although I have an interesting job, it certainly is not well paid and once rent, travel, bills and food money have gone out, it does not leave me with much to play with. So, in order to soften the cruel blow of my monthly paycheck, I have devised ways to minimise my own weekly spending. By day I am suitably armed – shunning all the tasty sandwich places surrounding me – with my packed lunch.

Every Sunday, I buy a variety of tasty ingredients to brighten up my lunch box – Parma ham and nice cheeses – rationing that armed as such I would save money. I fail miserably. My sandwiches always look shriveled by the time I unravel them, leaving me to wonder, as I tuck into an M&S sarnie, why mine are never the same?

By night, Soho is a whole new ball game. Bars, which are inconspicuous by day, suddenly loom up bigger and bolder and it takes more than a packed lunch to avoid them. Of course I could always replace my faithful Ribena with a flask of Absolut Vodka…

The adjustment from student to professional is a hard one. Most people experience a huge sense of relief on leaving school or university, eager for the break into their chosen career field. But it is easy to become disillusioned when you realise that few career paths are immediately paved with gold. In particular the media field is a difficult ladder to climb.

Then pop culture force-feeds us a diet of beautiful accessible things that glamorous young Twentysomethings cannot do without but which we cannot afford. The right clothes, bars, restaurants, any gimmick really. Magazines, aiming to cater for a younger audience, do not always offer a realistic portrayal of life in a city like London and most of us have a fair while to go before we can even begin to enjoy the life advocated by the media.

However there is light at the end of the tunnel, pay rises do happen and I am told you will gradually cease from feeling like you are still 60% student and more like you are 60% professional. And although this may or may not be a good thing, if it means I never have to look at my homemade sandwiches again then I’ll be a happy girl.

We just want romance. Honest.

When it comes to Valentine’s Day I am a typical female. Demanding with a touch of irrationality thrown in for good measure. Flowers, cuddly toys, fancy chocolates finished off with a cosy tête à tête in a swanky restaurant. I want it all. And I feel I have a license to be demanding after spending the last 4 years as a single girl. Now I have a boyfriend firmly in tow for Valentines, I don’t just want the lot, I expect it.

Valentine’s Day really is a time for reckoning, a time to judge a relationship and an opportunity to forge one. When I was 12, I used to fancy Joey who lived across the road. Even then Valentine’s Day was Judgment Day; if our love was meant to be, this was his chance to declare it, preferably by means of a red envelope grinning up at me from my letterbox. Needless to say, it did not happen and I awoke to the harsh reality that no matter how many Garbage Pail Kid stickers we swapped or Curly Wurly bars we shared, he probably did not fancy me after all. Then my mum started feeling sorry for me and began sending me cards. Each year she would sign my card with the name of whoever I fancied. This was sweet but also sheer torture. I remember them all. At 14 it was Chris who got the 281 bus with me, at 15 I went transatlantic with Joey from New Kids On The Block and now at 24 it’s Steve in Accounts. That last one, I am glad to say, was a joke.

But once you are older and you think Valentine’s are history, what happens? They raise the stakes. If you don’t have a boyfriend, a card is still fervently hoped for, from someone, anyone. If you do have a partner, then it’s got to be roses, cuddly toys, and meals out, chocolates, anything that shouts, “I AM LOVED. I AM CHERISHED” louder than the next person. Even if you are pampered with all the trimmings, there are still girls to taunt you who get all the above. AND taken away for cosy weekends in the country or for sophisticated little Euro weekend breaks. The kind of destinations you see advertised on the underground when you are most in need of a holiday.

This year’s Valentine’s Day took place on a Monday and even worse in the office. Roses were the main culprits and if some smug colleague had them delivered to the office then she instantly became a thorn in our side. We were the vultures, the rose maiden the carcass. The ride home on the tube evoked similar emotions as many a women clutched her bouquet proudly, fearful that another might grab it, fiercely warding off piercing stares thrown her way by flowerless females.

As for the men, I actually feel quite sorry for them at this time of the year. I mean, they must be under so much pressure. The funniest thing is walking past the florist in the evening and seeing the sweating, panting boyfriends fighting over the last half a dozen roses, knowing full well that the deceptive aroma of these beautiful flowers can make or break their lives. Or the mad rush over the weekend for that first class stamp, as precious a commodity as meat in the war.

But at the end of the day, all we truly want is romance. The presents, the meals and the roses are all nicely incidental but the thrill of romance is what it is all about. Being pampered in the name of love.
The cards, the flowers – these are things to take a lady back to the days when she was wooed and courted before forsaking her honour. In an age when quite often it takes no more than one Bacardi too many before woopsidaisy it’s, “How do you like your eggs?”, a hint of an effort is all it takes. We’re honestly not that difficult to please, no really. Having said that, if it means I never have to hold vigil by my letterbox again then I’ll have my eggs fried please, and runny in the middle.

Movie horrors

When was the last time you went to the pictures on a Saturday night? I used to think that the cinema on a Saturday night was a place frequented by a breed of people clad in corduroy trousers and trench coats. I preferred Sunday night cinema viewing in my heyday. But now that those good old days seem to be over and I am joined in marital union to my sofa, a picture house on a Saturday night is where I am most likely to be found and a normal one at that.

Last weekend my boyfriend and I decided to go and see The Bone Collector. We were looking forward to watching a good thriller and instead had the unexpected pleasure of witnessing a circus act. People whose pants seemed to have been invaded by an army of ants surrounded us. If not toilet hopping, they were wandering along the aisles trying to spot other pals and then coming back to ask their partners what they had missed. We then had three women sitting directly in front of us who talked throughout the entire film. Not only were they bantering inanely about post-cinema plans, they were also keen to indulge in a little detective work, “I reckon it’s ‘im,” being a fairly consistent observation. I can tell you that after two hours of listening to their rubbish, I was keen to do a bit of bone collecting myself!

I mean, you expect kids to misbehave. Where the sanctity of silence reigns supreme – places like the cinema, school assemblies and churches – you’re always guaranteed to get an ample quota of children clowning around. Perhaps the thrill of making noise in places that are out of bounds never really leaves us – confinable in some people, visible in others. Although this is a theory that can thankfully no longer be put to the test in a school assembly.

Then, on a more general note, you have the industrial popcorn chewer or the serial cola guzzler, with the prize for torturer extraordinaire going to none other than the smelly food eater. This specimen is usually found any place where there are a lot of people crammed together in a tight space with no easy way out. He or she prefers to eat Wotsits, burgers or that latest unwelcome addition to the cinema menu: nachos. Nachos smothered in lashings of Mr Squeezy cheese. Hello? Who thought that would ever improve picture house politics?

But I do think that suburban cinemas are definitely the least favourable – possibly because my worst experiences (and it seems those of my friends) have taken place in these cinemas. I can only guess this is because there is perhaps more of a “treat factor” involved in going to the pictures in town. These mega cinemas are usually very expensive and so you would guess that most people willing to fork out this money are interested in seeing the movie.

Being disturbed in the cinema is like being awakened from a really good dream, then you try so hard to get back into it, but it’s gone. The cinema is a place for relaxing. A place where the viewer has paid the money for his or her license to dream and fantasise. Whether you have opted for a romance, a thriller or an action movie, you are paying for the cinema experience as much as for anything else, otherwise it would be cheaper and easier to wait for the video, in my case glued to the sofa!

Email flirting

When I became a member of the rat race after a nice long holiday at Uni, email became my new toy. Most people had used computers at college, either for typing up coursework or emailing their mates. I never quite made it that far so for me it was a novelty. My first cyber “partner” was my friend Kate, through her I built up my email network and before long, with more of my friends online; I acquired an entire repertoire of people to distract me. Hey, I even met my last boyfriend over email. In fact, meeting potential romantic encounters over email seems to be my thing…

Email is great. It’s good for distraction; you can flirt brilliantly over it and assume a whole other persona. I have had countless email frissons where I cheekily emailed friends of friends, picked up from a circular mail (the cyber equivalent of picking someone up from a bar I guess) and indulged in some heavy duty flirtin’. It is also very good for building up a relationship. When I started seeing my ex, we spent hours mailing and it made it a lot easier to get to know each other. I guess any boundaries that might have been there in the first place were gradually lowered. You feel like you are in control and can monitor exactly what you want to say and how you want to say it. Naturally, as with any kind of drug, it does not always smell of roses. Email can be quite an impersonal way of communicating, particularly if you are trying to get to know someone. It becomes easier than phoning or interacting on a normal basis and so the communication can actually suffer in the long term.

You are plagued with the same worries except there is an even greater sense of urgency. If you don’t receive an email for the first half of the morning from your cyber playmate then a heart attack is imminent. It’s not like you can call and do 141 with your identity concealed. So if playing hard to get is your thing then you have to sustain all temptation and spend the day looking wistfully at your inbox.

The worst thing is spending an entire day panicking and irritating everyone else in the office only to discover later that the server was down. Then of course you still have to play it cool. “No emails – oh don’t worry honestly, I didn’t even have time to send any” – forgetting in the meantime the million undelivered ones floating in your inboxes and the subsequent tears. As for email servers being down, I think in every job I have ever had, the IT department has come to rely on me as a vital source of information. I always seem to know well in advance when my email isn’t working.

Then again there are countless email woopsies waiting to happen. Emails have a knack of occasionally straying and ending up in the wrong person’s inbox, usually boyfriends, ex’s and your Managing Director. There is also the lack of intonation in mailing, which doesn’t help and can lead to many an email fracas if taken the wrong way. It is a dangerous thing. Although an email relationship can be thrilling, it can also be fairly stressful once technology waves its magic wand. Plus it really is addictive and is not conducive with a good day’s work. Having said that I am still well up for a spot of email flirting, so guys…

My life is not going well

My life is not going well. In fact it is not going at all. In the space of a fortnight I have left my job, moved out of my flat and split up with my boyfriend. Regular readers of my column will know that the latter addition is not a welcome one. To say I feel like the rug has been pulled out from under my feet is putting it mildly, a much clearer picture would be painted if I said that the rug has been pulled out so quickly that I never even knew it was there.

I have spent the last two weeks analyzing my life in true Bridget Jones-style. In this time, my travels have taken me far and wide. From my friends living rooms to the comfort of a self-help book, and a barman. Yes, dare I say that on one occasion I sat at this bar, on my own, pouring my woes out to the barman as he eagerly poured more booze down my throat.
I felt like a character from Sunset Beach. But they all agree on the same thing. I need some control in my life apparently. CONTROL.

Fucking fantastic. Well let’s just see if I can rustle some up then. Control is now one of those words going around my mind, in much the same way that happiness swims around the mind of a manic-depressive. Where do I get it? How do I feel it? Has it really been so long since I had this precious commodity that I actually don’t know what it is? Quite a scary thought. This is one of those times when you know you have to do some serious soul searching, but I honestly do not know where to start. I mean I feel like a bit of a hippie saying that I “need to find myself, dude”, discover what I want, think about the guy I really want to be with. And isn’t this all a little clinical and calculated?

I don’t want to be thinking about the right man and nor do I feel very capable of making any life changing decisions. I shall simply surf the wave of my suburban lifestyle until I do know what I want but will I ever? I have visions of waking up one morning with a parcel awaiting me, bursting with my control and direction. In fact, make that a parcel hand delivered by God, so we can have a little pep talk afterwards, just to make sure I know what to do with it all.

Some people never even have to face this kind of crisis, or so it seems. There are some girls who have never had and probably never will hear a guy tell them that they cannot commit any more. I mean, surely if the guy had strong feelings for you in the first place then that would be enough. He would be so scared of losing you that he would have to face “commitment”. Well there are obviously girls out there who, with a flick of their eyelashes can convince a guy to forget his phobias. How do they do it? Is there a club that teaches them their tricks? Am I wearing the wrong mascara? Or is it because they are in fact in control of it all from the start? And if you wear your heart so fucking obviously on your sleeve, like I do, then have you lost the game before you even started?

I don’t think any of us really expect an answer to such questions. Things are just never that black and white are they? Well, right now, the right answers, the only answers are at the bottom of that bloody bottle!

Update……

Some thoughts on your situation.

Control isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. It’s inherently restricting, because it’s generally based on stability, security etc. and therefore offers little scope for spontanaiety, experiencing new things, etc.

People with safe jobs, a good pension, and nice wallpaper have control. They’re also frequently dead from the waist up (probably down too). You’re 24 – you can and will meet new people, you can and will get a new career.

About 18 months ago I lost contact with every single close friend I had. Overnight almost. People I’d known for 10 years. I imagined it would be devastating. In fact it opened up a wealth of new opportunities and experiences. I’d gotten into the habit of behaving a certain way, talking a certain way, doing the same things. Scary though it is, it’s incredibly liberating to have your life thrown into chaos. There are no boundaries, no restrictions.

As for women batting there eyelashes, and casting a “commitment spell” over us guys -d’you really want that?? There are thousands of guys dying to commit as soon as possible. Only because they’re scared of being alone, or scared of not having control.

A final thought – I recently got promoted at work, and it’s a little scary in the sense that I don’t know how to do all the things I need to. But it’s also tremendously exciting to face a new challenge. The point is that our perception of change is relative – a job promotion is viewed positively, a relationship split negatively.

Let me end on a cliche – the grass is always greener on the other side. If you’re relationship had lasted for years and years to come, d’you think you might have started to miss the freedom and excitement of single life?

Keep smiling

Thom.

 

 

 

 

Scare cuts

Ok, when did you last have your haircut? In fact, my question should be “Have you ever had the misfortune to go to a XXXXXXXXX salon?”. Well, I have.

This chain of hairdressers can be found hidden away in tube stations or random shopping centres, usually in places like Bromley or anywhere in Essex. They charge a basic price, usually a tenner (bit of a clue there), and you do not need an appointment. You simply walk in and walk out a smiling, hair happy person. Um, not me.

Not that I am a XXXXXXXXX spotter, but the only people who ever seem to be in these salons are people who want an easy trim or a simple blow dry. And then people like me come along with their uncontrollable impulses. People like me who jump in right at the deep end. So on Monday night, I went to my underground Tescos and lo and behold, there was a XXXXXXXXX salon. Indeed, it was begging me to come and have a look. It was already quite late so I did not think they would be able to see me, perhaps I was testing them or testing myself to see how far I could go. Unfortunately they made me an appointment. I waited for half an hour. In this time I became more ambitious and thought, well I might as well go for a bob. XXXXXXXXX have to employ trained hairdressers I thought, trying to ignore the fact that one of them was a mullet head. I concentrated instead on the Paul Mitchell products by the till. My label antenna told me that with products like these then they had to be all right.

My turn soon came. I had been hoping I was going to get the pretty hairdresser with the nice sleek hair. Luckily the mullet stayed well away but instead I got something equally as frightening. My male hairdresser was Irish and drunk. I could smell the alcohol on his breath. He took me off to wash my hair and ended up washing my eyes with half the shampoo (Paul Mitchell). XXXXXXXXX don’t “do” towels, so I dripped back to my seat and sat down nervously. He picked up my hair in and in one clean sweep he began to chop. Fearing the attack of his scissors, I smiled meekly and told him I didn’t care what he did as long as it was even. He smiled a shark smile back at me and told me: “ We’ll see what we can do”.

He chopped along to Britney Spears and off it all went. Instead of the two inches I asked for, he took off four. And now I look like an elf, I look like I should be auditioning for a part in ‘Lord Of The Rings’. A mullet would probably have been better.

I am so displeased with my haircut that I considered having hair extensions. I even surfed the net to find out about them. Is that really vain? And can you believe that they cost £500 for a full head? £500!! I think the upshot of that little discovery would be that I shall remain elf-like for at least another couple of months…

Besides, having a haircut can sometimes be like splitting up with someone; you don’t realise how much you appreciated your long, luscious locks until they go. You grieve them for a little while, you don’t feel all that attractive and then suddenly the cloud disappears and you realise that in fact shorter hair is better. You have more freedom, more body, it’s in better condition and hey it doesn’t take as long to dry… even if you do look like an elf.

Jim Carrey’s Jet

When asked the question – When will you know you’ve made it? Would your answer reflect a cosy and sane perception of an idealistic world? For example, happily married with a couple of kids with your own home and financial security. Or in my case, plenty of women, several Jack Daniel’s and cokes before lunch, an unlimited Visa card and a boss who didn’t mind my playboy rogue personality as I jetted around the world on business trips. But realistically, how good can it get? Well, for comic impresario and multi-million pound earner Jim Carrey you’d think he would be able to answer the above question with consummate ease.

But, on being overlooked for an Oscar award for last years ‘Truman Show’ and for his latest feature, ‘Man on the Moon’, Jim’s obsessive lust for the film worlds’ most prestigious lump of brass has made him lose touch with the real world. Unhappy with a lack of recognition from Hollywood’s establishment, he pulled out of a European press meet in Paris this month. Like his ‘Mask’ alter ego – Carrey seems intent in annoying the world’s media – thriving off the attention. Again, a prime example of how symbiotic the relationship between celebrity and journalist is. A sick and twisted partnership in the real world – but then again the movie business is not exactly the real world.

However, these things are commonplace with the quirks and whims of someone who has the world at his feet and his head in the clouds for the past five years. What is extra-ordinary is that Carrey refused Danny De-Vito, his co-star in the film, a ride in his private Learjet to get to the press interviews in the first place! It’s a hard life isn’t it?

Born in New Market, Ontario, Canda on Jan 17th 1962 to a working class family, in his teens Carrey had to take the job as caretaker of his local school when his father lost his job. Juggling between work and education the latter lost out. It was at this point in his life that Carrey believed that comedy become his way of ‘shielding himself from the world’. At 15, he began stand-up in ‘Yuk Yuk’s’, a famous Toronto club, before moving to LA to try the club circuit there. After becoming notorious with one of his characters, “Fire Marshall Bill”, a sketch which apparently encouraged children to set fire to themselves, he was thrust into the movie-world. In one year, 1994, he sank into the American conscious with ‘Ace Ventura Pet Detective’, ‘Mask’ and ‘Dumb and Dumber’. It seemed Carrey had been on the big screen forever.

Notoriously difficult to work with Hollywood’s ‘Joker of the Pack’ is about to release ‘Man on the Moon’ in the UK on the 5th May. The film is a portrayal of Andy Kaufman – one of Americas’ most eccentric and enigmatic stage performers. One of Kaufman’s alter ego’s – Tony Stilton is an obsessed actor who never received the Academy nod he believe he deserves. Was Carrey typecast? Did he seek the role? Does he identify with Kaufman – you get my drift on this, don’t you?

Whether you love or hate Carrey – he is a screen comedy genius who perhaps should win an Oscar some day. Although, lets not forget, how many screen legends have been overlooked over the years? One of this year’s nominees, Tom Cruise, is probably long overdue for the Oscar and deserved one much more than Carrey in my opinion. Perhaps if Carrey was more interested in some of the roles he plays rather then the spin he creates about himself then the awards would flow. But hey, who needs awards when you’ve got your own Learjet.

Take my advice, a few friends and a bit of respect wouldn’t go a miss either Jim.